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Singapore

SportSG to set aside S$18m to help gyms, studios affected by latest COVID-19 restrictions

SINGAPORE: SportSG will set aside up to S$18 million under the Sports Resilience Package for eligible businesses and self-employed persons affected by the latest COVID-19 guidelines, it said in a press release on Tuesday (May 11).

This follows a tightening of measures which has meant that only low-intensity physical activities are allowed to continue at indoor gyms and fitness studios.

"The new measures are intended to help defray operating costs for the affected businesses and support the affected self-employed persons during this period, preserve core capabilities, as well as catalyse the industry to encourage Singaporeans to continue to stay active," said SportSG in a media release.

READ: Low-intensity physical activities allowed to continue at indoor gyms, fitness studios amid tightened COVID-19 guidelines

The S$18 million falls under the S$25 million top-up to the package that was announced earlier this year. The total amount of COVID-19 support measures under this package currently stands at S$75 million.

One of the measures aimed to support those affected will be the S$7.7 million sport and fitness operating grant.

This will provide additional support for more than 500 entities, in particular gyms and fitness studios, said SportSG.

Eligible entities will receive a one-time disbursement ranging from S$5,000 to S$100,000 for the three-week period. The amount of support disbursed takes into account overhead costs such as rental and salaries.

READ: S$25 million boost for self-employed people, businesses in sports; new framework to address abuse and harassment

In addition, the self-employed persons project grant, which was first announced at this year's Committee of Supply debate, will see its grant quantum increased from S$2.5 million to S$7.5 million. This means it can support an estimated 300 projects, up from the previous 100, said SportSG. 

Successful grant applicants may obtain up to S$25,000 in funding per project.

S$2.8 million has been also set aside for the sport and fitness self-employed persons support fund, which will disburse a one-time cash assistance of up to S$400 for those eligible and have experienced at least 50 per cent income loss during the three weeks, added SportSG.

READ: Gym and fitness studio owners disappointed at mandated closures as they find ways to adapt

Fitness instructors can also apply for the continuing coach education training allowance grant, said SportSG.

This will allow them to "actively engage in continuous learning and be current in their knowledge and skills" during this period. 

Eligible instructors may claim S$7.50 for each claimable hour for the continuing coach education training/event up to a maximum of S$300 per person until Mar 31, 2022

“The stricter measures are necessary to contain the spread of COVID-19. We understand the impact it has on the sport and fitness industry which plays an integral role in encouraging health and wellness among Singaporeans," said SportSG chief executive officer Lim Teck Yin.

"We have been engaging business owners and professionals in these sectors to better understand their challenges. We have developed these additional support measures to help them cushion the impact during this period of closure. We urge everyone to rally and work together in guarding against COVID-19 spread.” 

Source: CNA/mt(rw)

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